Irish Medicines Board takes part in Operation PANGEA
14 November 2008
International Internet Day of Action
The Irish Medicines Board (IMB) participated in Operation PANGEA on 12 November 2008 in conjunction with eight other countries. This is the first international Internet Day of Action, targeting the illegal online sale of medicines. It was co-ordinated by the Permanent Forum on International Pharmaceutical Crime, INTERPOL and the World Health Organisation’s (WHO) International Medical Products Anti-Counterfeiting Taskforce (IMPACT).
Under Irish law the sale of prescription only medicines by mail order is prohibited. This prohibition includes Internet supplies of prescription only medicines.
As part of Operation PANGEA, the IMB visited two premises, one in Kerry and another in Dublin in connection with a website hosted in Ireland. The website was operating as a facilitator linking potential purchasers of prescription only medicines to another website outside of Ireland. The Irish website has now been decommissioned. As part of its follow up, the IMB is liaising with counterparts in other countries on the matter.
In addition, the IMB, is working in close cooperation with the Irish Revenue and Customs Service, to intercept¹ the Internet supply of prescription only medicines throughout the year.
The IMB strongly advises consumers not to purchase medicinal products through unauthorised sources such as the Internet² as there can be no guarantees on the safety, efficacy and quality of products purchased in this manner.
The IMB liaises closely with other similar bodies throughout Europe and the rest of the world in the enforcement of laws relating to the supply of medicines and medical devices to the market.
Siobhan Molloy / Angie Grant Tel: (01) 676 0168
Weber Shandwick Mob: 086 817 5066 / 086 377 2791
1. If an Internet supplied medicine is intercepted when entering Ireland it will be detained and destroyed and the purchaser will not be compensated for the financial loss.
2. The World Health Organisation (WHO) has estimated that, of the websites that conceal their true identity, 50% of these supply counterfeit medicines.
Other links: www.interpol.int